Resources during Covid19 Resources to support your mental wellbeing during Covid19 You might be worried about Coronavirus and how it could affect your life and your family's life. Below are a few resources which might help during these worrying times. Useful downloads An extensive list of groups and organisations which can provide help and support can be downloaded here. A list of useful apps, all designed to support your mental wellbeing. Useful links Organisation & Link Topic Kent County Council's 'Mental Health and Wellbeing' page A localised hub of information with simple tips and advice and details of local and national services to help people protect their wellbeing. NHS 'Every Mind Matters' campaign Top tips for looking after your mental wellbeing while staying at home. Includes: Talking about your worries Looking after your bodies Looking after your sleep Staying connected with others Planning practical things Finding out about your employment and benefit rights. LightHearts Mindfulness and meditation promoting holistic therapies and mental wellbeing. LightHeats 10 day for Mental Health Mini-training '10 days for Mental Health' free online course. The methods have been specially chosen by a mindfulness instructor and a NHS therapist/psychiatric nurse to help you reduce stress, cope with anxiety and deal with fearful feelings. Samaritans An online learning course on managing stress and making choices Rehab4Addiction An online resource for individuals and families dealing with substance addiction and their mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic. OptiMale (Understanding the male menopause and mental health) This website covers important topics such as: Understanding "male menopause" - separating facts from fiction, and why it can be misleading (and harmful) to group the different changes and conditions affecting men as they age under this label. The physical and emotional changes associated with male menopause why men should always seek a proper medical diagnosis for said symptoms. The effect on men’s mental wellbeing - from memory loss and lowered libido to secondary effects like fatigue, insomnia, and irrationality - and their impact on daily life. Helpful tips and advice for managing symptoms, lifestyle changes and treatments that can help, and other useful information. Money & Mental Health - Practical Financial Skills to Manage Money The guide covers important topics such as: How financial debt and money worries impact people’s mental health. The importance of practical financial skills and how it helps with mental health, including expert advice on combating debt, knowing why people overspend, and how to manage the effects of money pressures. Practical, useful tips and advice such as how to budget, analyzing spending habits, where to save on household expenses, how to deal with debt, and how to make money management a habit. Other useful information and links to external resources to help develop practical financial skills and healthy habits around money. Top Tip 1: Connect with people Maintaining healthy relationships with people you trust is important for your mental wellbeing. Think about how you can stay in touch with friends and family while you are all staying at home – by phone, messaging, video calls or social media – whether it's people you usually see often, or connecting with old friends. Lots of people are finding the current situation difficult, so staying in touch could help them too. Make plans to video chat with people or groups you'd normally see in person. You can also arrange phone calls or send instant messages or texts. If you're worried that you might run out of stuff to talk about, make a plan with someone to watch a show or read a book separately so that you can discuss it when you contact each other. Think of other ways to keep in contact with people while meeting in person is not possible. For example, you could check your phone numbers are up to date, or that you have current email addresses for friends you've not seen for a while. Top Tip 2: Be Active Taking time to be active can help with difficult emotions and worries and improve our wellbeing. There are lots of different ways that you can keep active and use your creative side. arts and crafts, such as drawing, painting, collage, sewing, craft kits or upcycling DIY colouring mindfulness playing musical instruments, singing or listening to music writing yoga meditation. If you can, you could also try to build more physical activity into your daily routine. Exercising at home can be simple and there are options for most ages and abilities, such as: cleaning your home dancing to music going up and down stairs seated exercises online exercise workouts that you can follow sitting less – if you notice you've been sitting down for an hour, just getting up or changing position can help. Arthritis Action have designed a number of gentle exercises that you can do at home and at a comfortable pace, including shoulder rolls, knee pushes, seated cycling and more. Top Tip 3: Meditation and Mindfulness Relaxation techniques such as meditation and mindfulness can significantly help deal with feelings of anxiety. Becoming more aware of the present moment through mindfulness and meditation can help us enjoy the world around us more and understand ourselves better. It can also help to reduce anxiety by stopping you from worrying about past events or the future. Practising mindfulness has a number of other benefits too including reducing stress, blood pressure and chronic pain, as well as assisting with better memory and recall. Why not try this mindful breathing exercise or mindful meditation on nature. Top tip 4: Working from home As more organisations move to online working, human connections are more important than ever. Here are some ways to support your mental health, reduce feelings of isolation, and feel connected with colleagues while working remotely. Although you may have some extra time in bed without a commute, aim to wake up around the same time every day. You’ll feel less tired, more refreshed, and find it easier to concentrate throughout the day. Keep to your established morning routine if you can – get ready, washed, and dressed as if you are going to the office. This will help you get into the mindset that you are at work. Try to set aside a work area separate from your sleeping area, as this will help to prepare you for work mode and make it easier to switch off at the end of the day. You don’t need a home office to do this – a small desk set up in a corner of your room, or a laptop at the end of the kitchen table can do the trick. Including some movement into your work from home routine will help maintain your physical and mental health. You’ll feel more awake and alert, and your concentration and sleep will improve. Mental Health First Aid have produced more useful tips on how to support your wellbeing while working from home. For further tips, you can also watch this short video offering guidance for ways to support your mental health while working from home. Top Tip 5: Supporting your children It’s normal for children and young people to feel worried or anxious at the moment. We’ve all experienced sudden changes in our lives and routines – and we’re living with lots of uncertainty about the coming weeks. For some young people, the coronavirus pandemic may also worsen or trigger anxieties they were already struggling with.Here are five things you can do to support your child: Talk to them about what’s going on. Find out how they’re feeling and what they’re thinking about, let them know it’s okay to feel scared or unsure, and try to answer their questions and reassure them in an age appropriate manner. Remember, you do not need to know all the answers, but talking things through can help them feel calmer. Help them to reflect on how they’re feeling and encourage them to think about the things they can do to make them feel safer and less worried. Reassure them that this will pass, you’re there for them, and you will get through this together. Spend time doing a positive activity with your child (such as reading, playing, painting or cooking) to help reassure them and reduce their anxiety. This is also a great way of providing a space for them to talk through their concerns, without having a ‘big chat’. Keep as many regular routines as possible, so that your child feels safe and that things are stable. For further advice visit Young Minds Top Tip 6: Coping with various mental health conditions. Anxiety & self-isolation The coronavirus pandemic is causing increased stress and anxiety, particularly people with existing mental health problems. Anxiety can show in a variety of ways. This can be as changes in your body, in being constantly worried or changes in your behaviour, such as becoming overly careful or avoiding things that trigger anxiety. Here are some tips to help. Coping with stress Stress is the body's reaction to feeling threatened or under pressure. Too much stress can affect our mood, our body and our relationships – especially when it feels out of our control. It can make us feel anxious and irritable, and affect our self-esteem. If you are stressed, you may feel overwhelmed, have racing thoughts or difficulty concentrating, be irritable, feel constantly worried, anxious or scared, feel a lack of self-confidence, have trouble sleeping or feel tired all the time, avoid things or people you are having problems with and perhaps even drink or smoke or eat more than usual. Here are some tips for how to manage stress.